Wonder Woman – Volume 1 – 224

General Info

Issue No:
224
On Sale Date:
March 1976
Cover Date:
June-July 1976
Era:
Bronze Age
Story Title:
Wonder Woman vs the United States!

Creative Team

Cover Artist:
Ernie Chan
Writer:
Martin Pasko
Penciller:
Jose Delbo
Inker:
Tex Blaisdell
Letterer:
Not Stated
Colourist:
Not Stated
Editor:
Julius Schwartz

Characters

Main:
Wonder Woman (Diana Prince), Steve Trevor
Heroes:
N/A
Villains:
Panthea
Olympians:
N/A
Amazons:
Hippolyta (Hippolyte)
Other:
Lois Lane
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Synopsis

This tale begins in a Military Prison Camp in Virginia where Wonder Woman resides in a cell. Lois Lane is giving a report for CBS Television on the circumstances that have lead up to this extraordinary scene…

Apparently, the Amazon Princess is being held in custody following allegations that she has led the Amazons in an attack on a US jet fighter, which was subsequently destroyed. The President of the United States is due to give an address later that evening to deliver the decision of an emergency session of congress. They are meeting right now to decide their response to this, as yet, unconfirmed act of aggression by the Amazon nation. Wonder Woman has voluntarily placed herself in federal custody as a symbolic gesture to highlight the Amazon philosophy of non aggression.

Lois then asks Wonder Woman whether she still insists that the attack on the jet is contrary to Amazon principles. The Princess replies that the notion of Amazons taking a human life is utterly preposterous and begins to recount her side of the story…

The air force jet had left Fort Lauderdale on a routine patrol but around one hour later the control tower received a totally inexplicable message – “Cockpit electrical failure…losing altitude…position unknown!”. The tower managed to plot the last known position of the craft as being within the Bermuda Triangle.

Then they heard the pilot one last time, saying that he had suddenly come across an island with Greek style architecture seemingly inhabited by women and that this must be Paradise Island. Suddenly, he screamed and his transmission cut off.

Lois then asks Wonder Woman if the discovery of Paradise Island had been linked to the many disappearances of ships and planes from the area known as the ‘Devil’s Triangle’? The Amazon confirms this, explaining that she had been performing a civil ceremony to launch a new liner when a group in the crowd suddenly begins to cause a riot. As she swoops down to help the police she discovers that they are demonstrating against her!

Although she does not want to seriously hurt them, she is forced to protect herself as they advance on her. She eventually manages to use her lasso to quell the anger in the crowd. Then, when the FBI arrive on the scene she greets them and asks whether they are here to arrest her? A she sees their puzzled expressions she tells them she is a National Security hazard and should be taken in to custody. As she takes the agents by the arm and moves through the watching crowd, she whispers to them to play along, explaining that this is the only way to keep the crowd from rioting further.

She confirms to Lois that she then placed herself in custody to appease the nation and to offer assurance of the Amazons’ innocence in the case of the jets disappearance, as well as all the other strange occurrences in the area.

Lois thanks Wonder Woman for the interview and tells her cameraman to leave. She then whispers to the Amazon Princess that the coast is clear and Wonder Woman prepares to break out in order to solve the case. She thanks Lois for not covering this particular ‘news’ item and asks her to say ‘Hi to Superman!’.

She uses her lasso to spin a human shaped form and uses red and blue thread from the bed clothes to weave into it, giving it the appearance of her own costume.

She then shakes the figure, causing it to vibrate at super speed and she hopes that in the murky shadows of the cell, it will appear to be her. She then bends the bars and boards her invisible jet waiting outside.

As she makes her way to Paradise Island, she thinks back to the recent events there and the rebirth of Steve Trevor. Although he is still the same Steve as she remembers him, she feels that he is also different in some way and that it must be difficult having come back from beyond to live his life as a mortal again.

Her thoughts return to the task at hand as she touches down on Paradise Island. She greets her mother, the queen, who has been monitoring the escalating crisis using the magic sphere. She assures Diana that the Amazons were not even aware of the Bermuda Triangle’s reputation, let alone be responsible for the disappearances.

However, at that moment elsewhere on the island an female guard reports to her superior, Panthea. She advises her mistress that the Princess Diana has returned and Panthea replies that in that case, they must change their original plan. The time has come for direct action!

So shortly, as Diana and her mother are conversing, a group of ‘Amazon’ guards arrive. The leader informs Diana that her surrender to the authorities in Man’s World showed cowardice and she has brought shame upon the Amazons. They demand that she be exiled from the island at once.

As Wonder Woman tries to reason with them they attack and she is forced to defend herself. During the combat, she uses a karate chop and smashes the leader’s bracelet. Wonder Woman stares in amazement, knowing that the Amazon Bracelets are unbreakable and deduces that these so called ‘Amazons’ are actually impostors.

But before Wonder Woman can question her further, the woman takes a pill and kills herself. As the Amazon Princess turns to confront the other ‘Amazons’, she hears a cry from behind. Panthea orders her cohorts to strike and two of them grab Wonder Woman’s arms, while a third draws her sword. But the Amazing Amazon kicks the weapon from her attackers hands and throws the other two at the remaining rebels, while Hippolyta also joins in and knocks out another two impostors.

More attackers arrive and dodging spears and swords, Wonder Woman runs over to a nearby boulder which she throws at them. She then slices a tree bark up into wooden posts and surrounds the remaining females with them. As the real Amazons arrive on the scene to take the impostors prisoner, Wonder Woman sets off after Panthea, whom she has recognised as the Amazon astronomer.

She arrives just in time to stop Panthea taking a poisoned drink and asks her why she has done this. Panthea explains that for years the cloak of invisibility around the island has interfered with her telescopes and impeded her research. She experimented with ways to eliminate it temporarily but one day one of the experiments backfired, destroying her bracelets.

Free of their influence for the first time, she began to think clearly and realised that Amazon technology was stagnating under Hippolyta’s rule. She therefore decided to seize the throne but first she had to think of a way to dispose of the Princess. She chanced upon the legend of the Bermuda Triangle and deactivated the invisibility shield as the US jet fighter approached, allowing him to report back what he saw. She then used the adjusted shield she had developed into a force field to smash it into pieces.

Panthea hoped that the ensuing war would weaken Hippolyta’s position and allow her to take over. For her part, Diana would be killed by a vigilante group. But now that plan has been ruined!

Panthea suddenly swings a nearby telescope round and clouts Wonder Woman to the floor. She then sprints for the exit. But the floored Amazon does not give up easily and removing her Tiara, throws it at the fleeing Panthea, knocking her out.

After seeking counsel with Aphrodite, the queen instructs her daughter to take Panthea back to Man’s World to face punishment for her crimes.

And so much later, as Diana sits on the sofa with Steve in her New York apartment, the US President addresses the nation to confirm that the grave crisis has been resolved and that America will not demand restitution even though the pilot’s life was taken due to the acts of an Amazon madwoman. In truth, many more American lives have been saved by the Amazon’s gift to the world – Wonder Woman herself!

As Diana sheds a tear of gratitude, Steve leans over and says to her that the President is right in what he says and that is exactly why he loves her.

And as they kiss passionately, he tells her that he wants to go on loving her..